ASAT: At Home and Abroad



On 11 May 1978, President Carter committed the nation to a new space policy by signing Presidential Decision Memorandum 37. (PDM 37), a policy statement that breaks new ground by projecting the principle of a nation’s sovereign rights in space and the right to defend them. This policy also asserted that any nation’s space systems are national property and are entitled to free passage and unhampered operation. PDM 37 commits the nation to activities in space in support of its right of self-defence and thereby strengthens national security, deterrence, and arms control agreements. In the absence of an agreement to comprehensively limit antisatellite capabilities and their use, the United States will vigorously pursue development of its own capabilities. The United States space defence programme will include an integrated attack warning, notification, verification, and contingency reaction capability which can effectively detect and react to threats to United States space systems.


National Security Orbital Altitude Lower Orbital Altitude Sufficient Thermal Energy ASAT Programme 
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© Robert L. Pfaltzgraff, Jr and Uri Ra’anan 1981

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